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Interesting Rock Water Features for the Garden

6 Apr


Rock water features for the garden will create an amazing impact in your outdoor area. You can delegate a corner for your chosen feature or features and bring to life dull areas or places in your garden that don’t seem to have a “purpose”. You can also enhance an existing pond or water feature, creating a water paradises that looks extremely pleasing to the eye as well as adding freshness and a touch of raw nature to your patio or outdoor area.

A water feature can actually add interest to your patio or overall garden decor and the effect is usually rather dramatic as water really adds the effect of making the area seem bigger than what it really is (see garden mirrors). The beauty of adding rocks or features that are rock-alike is that they add certain roughness and the wild to your backyard. Features that resemble stone are impressive as stones bear with them history and a sense of solemnity. Add stoned patio paving for added effect near your feature, it would also act as a guide to your new addition.


There is nothing like the sound of water in any green area, and when this one trickles over stones the effect is that of paradise.

 

Build it or Buy it?

Rock water features can be purchased already built and all you have to do, really, is find the perfect spot in your garden to place it. Surely you could built your own at home and there are several books that would show you how to do so. If you are the type of person that likes to get down and dirty in the garden, this is by no means the best way for you to get your dream water feature.

 

Down and Dirty

You would first have to choose the right spot, which is not always going to be your preferred one. Choosing the site is most definitely one of the most important tasks when building your garden pond. You are looking for an area that is clear of any trees or even shrubs, where the sun shines and there is enough space to build a large feature. You can always add pebbles or stones to the edge and a few garden lights in the right place for effect. Next, you have to consider which plants and/or animals are you going to have in your pool/water feature. You don’t want plants that can be a bit too invasive, consider having animals if you’re not the sort of person who is that interested in plants. Frogs, certain type of fish, toads and also newts are not only very useful in the water feature but also they will keep the water nice and clean. For the construction you can choose amongst different materials like concrete, fiberglass or the simple liner. Consider adding containers for the plants for added interested. If you really want to get down and dirty with your project you could even think of adding different levels to your pond. A series of pools, for example, can be fitted on different levels and here is where you can seriously think about waterfalls and/or water streams. A pump can also give it a stream and still have the natural look. It’s not expensive and works rather well. Remember that childlren and safety should go hand in hand so do build a retaining wall (see retaining wall ideas) to make sure the children have no access to the water.

 

Easy Option

Ready made rock water features for the garden will add all the interest of a constructed one without having to worry about site planning and other nuisances. Choose the right one for your garden, add the right garden furniture around it so you can relax and enjoy the sound of the water while sipping your favorite cocktail any time of the day or night!


Avoiding Azek Decking Problems

14 Mar

Avoiding Azek Decking Problems

Azek Decking is one alternative to having a wood, concrete or steel deck.  This PVC product is touted as “low maintenance”, but don’t be fooled if a salesperson tries to tell you that it’s “maintenance-free”.  Like anything else your purchase or own, it must be maintained.  It’s just that some things require less maintenance than others.  Understandably, with today’s busy lifestyles, any product that you choose to enhance your garden decor should be as convenient as possible.  There are some Azek decking problems of which everyone should be aware.  As is the case with all composite or PVC decking products, you will pay a premium when purchasing this type of decking.

Placing Items on your Azek Deck

You will need to take precautions with your low maintenance garden decking.  Take care when placing things on PVC decking such as planters or a gas BBQ.  They should be placed so they line up over the framing on the underside of the deck.   Azek decking is softer than wood and if you don’t ensure that you’re placing either large planters (with heavy soil) or barbeques over 2 of the deck joists, the weight of these items will cause the decking to sag with use.

Spots and Staining

Certain items should be avoided while on the Azek deck surface – sunscreen, insect repellent, citronella oil, cooked or uncooked greasy food or even wine.  Although it is difficult to avoid using items like sunscreen and insect repellent when outdoors, try to avoid applying it while on your deck.  Leaves left to sit on the deck will cause stains.  Do not use tarps or plastic on this deck product because moisture and heat get trapped between the tarp/plastic and the deck surface, causing spotting.  If you use anything like roll up awnings, it’s best to keep an eye on whether there is any rust or corrosion on the units.  When it rains and drips, the water can carry the rust onto the decking causing more troubling spots or stains.   It is recommended to use a conditioning treatment on a yearly basis.  This annual application will aid in maintaining your Azek deck’s appearance and helps to repel stains.

With any exterior product used in patio design, routine cleaning is necessary to keep its appearance looking up to par, but do not use a pressure washer.  It can remove part of the surface of the decking and dirt, grime, grease and even mold can appear in the grooves.  Take care with your patio ideas and know that you may encounter Azek decking problems.

Azek Decking Problems

photo by NetLawyer


Garden Decorations Can Make your Garden Look Fantastic

31 Jan

Garden Decorations Can Make your Garden Look Fantastic

Garden Decorations 6


Garden decorations can work marvels even if your lovely garden is a small backyard one, provided that you carefully combine all elements, creating a well balanced look. Garden decor have inspired famous architects and gardeners through all ages, and while you cannot recreate the Alhambra gardens, you can definitely select garden furniture that reproduces your favourite style.

Combine in Style

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photo by zakwitnij

You need not be a gardener yourself to have a good idea what you want your garden to look like.  Consulting specialised garden design magazines is a good idea but bear in mind that imitating others’ design ideas is not always a good approach. Garden windmills and garden mirrors, for instance, are rarely combined successfully while simple garden furniture is often a good and more affordable choice for those who are tempted to try their designer skills.

You can find numerous offers for gardens decorations online with some vendors providing useful tips on installing your garden with various items depending on your preferences and household budget. A small arbour requires a well kept pathway, probably with a small garden-seat and a few discrete lamps along the path. Garden windmills will create a free-spirit feeling and you can craft them yourself to make them look like the ones from your childhood.

Why Material is Important?

Garden Decorations 3

photo by Mindful One

It is up to you to select materials that best fit your needs, but bear in mind that wood, metals, and plastics not only have different properties but bear different “spirit” when the matter in hand is how to achieve best exterior design.

Wooden furniture is more “warm” while plastic chars and tables are very convenient to use and clean but look cheaper and create more informal atmosphere. Garden decorations made of metal are always good looking for they inspire emotions of longevity. As a matter of fact, they are more durable than all other items of garden furniture but are more expensive as well.

Everyone Can Afford Garden Decorations

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photo by HarryCjr

A popular fallacy is that decent garden decorations are expensive ones. You can find such decorations at affordable price if you take your time and examine all offers by online and brick-and-mortar garden furniture stores. Some merchants offer leasing while others provide garden furniture for rent, therefore you can furnish your garden to meet the specific requirements of a birthday party, for instance. Conduct your research and enjoy a new garden decor that looks stylish and expensive yet at affordable price by comparing prices.


Garden Furniture – Maximizing your Enjoyment of the Garden

24 Sep

Garden Furniture – Maximizing your Enjoyment of the Garden


When considering making the outdoors more comfortable and more functional, the addition of garden furniture is always a good decision. Outdoor furniture, compared to the indoor ones, have to be more resistant to elements and more durable. If chosen wisely, this type of furniture can be used to complement existing garden decor or be the centrepieces of the garden.

The first thing you have to decide is whether it is to stay out all year round or be stored away in winter. Items that can be left out of doors is made from wood – usually hardwood – plastic or metal. The ones that must be taken indoors is made from cane or bamboo, unpainted and untreated softwood and, of course, anything that is upholstered. Storing it indoors or in a garage can sometimes present problems, unless you buy something that can actually be used indoors too. But there is a third category; items like loungers, chairs and tables that are collapsible or can be easily dismantled, and take up very little space when stored.

Choose wisely and make sure it goes with the style of your house and patio. Rustic, rough-hewn benches and tables usually look out of place in a town setting, unless you have deliberately created a country garden look to go with them. Bamboo and cane or any outdoor wicker furniture look good with tropical plants like the yucca, but they are less happy in stark modern surroundings. Wooden items should be strongly made, especially if it is to stay outside all year round. Check that any metal screws, hinges or fittings oh them are made from stainless steel or brass rather than steel, which will rust.

Materials

There are different materials for garden furniture sets. When one aims to have a nature-centric garden, a good idea is to use wooden garden furniture. Durable wood include cedar and teak. Teak garden furniture is made of the tropical hardwood which is weather-resistant. It is very attractive and since it is able to stand the weather, it is among the longest lasting furniture commercially available. This is the reason why furniture made of this material often becomes a valued antique. Cedar patio furniture, on the other hand, is resistant to fungi, cracking and warping, making the beauty of this hardwood last a decade or more.

If one wants a material which is low-cost but serves a similar purpose, rattan garden furniture is a good option. Rattan is a climbing plant which grows in the tropics. Natural wicker furniture can be made of rattan but it can also be made of bamboo. However, these materials are less weather-resistant than metal or wooden furniture.

Resin patio furniture are said to be comparable to other weather-resistant furniture. Resin is a synthetic material which can be dyed with different colours, moulded into narrow strips and woven like natural wicker furniture. Manufacturers and homemakers say that this material can stand harsh weather and can be left outdoors without protection.

Metal materials are great for the outdoors. Aluminium furniture is lightweight and does not rust. Wrought iron, on the other hand, is heavy and is a fitting material in places where there are strong winds (e.g. near the beach). Because this material is predisposed to rusting, painting and powder-coating can be used to extend its usability. Metal bistro sets will give your garden the Mediterranean appeal; many bars and restaurants use table and chair sets so people can enjoy a meal or drinks in the terrazas or piazas in places like Spain and Italy. Dreamy.

The conservatory is also a g reat place for storing some of the furniture you don’t want to leave outdoors either during the winter season or on a daily basis. Choose furniture that will also look good in this room – comfort and a homey and cozy look is something many people strive for. Being such an important room that lives within the realm of the house and the garden, do check out this lean to conservatory kits for great information on conservatories done on a relatively low budget.

Tips for the Outdoor Setup

If the outdoors is sloping or the house is in a ridge, furniture could be placed on established garden decking in order to have a better view of the environment. If the garden has big trees with strong trunks and branches, garden furniture hammocks can be hanged for. These hammocks may be used by the members of the family for taking a nap, reading a book or watching the sunset.

To make the outdoors more comfortable, garden furniture cushions, hanging chairs or a lounger may be added. Even if the family or the occupants of the house prefer to sunbathe, it is still good to add parasols because the heat can become very overwhelming, especially during this age of global warming.

Even if the manufacturer or the seller touts the garden furniture sets as resistant to the elements, it is still better to take that extra mile to protect these outdoor mainstays. One protective measure is to place them under a gazebo tent. This way, even if it rains or snows, they would be subjected to lesser forces. Outdoor furniture covers and patio covers can be used for tables, chairs and other outdoor essentials.

Where to Find Outdoor Essentials

There are many good furniture shops for UK residents but the best are Homebase, Argos and
B&Q, and in general (USA or Worldwide) check out Lowes, Smith and Hawken, (has moved to target.com), Ikea and Pottery Barn. Whether one is looking for supplies, accessories and furniture for the garden, these places are the places to visit.

Photo: by amandabhslater **Courtesy of flickr.com

garden furniture

How to Beautify the Outdoors with Garden Edging

17 Sep

How to Beautify the Outdoors with Garden Edging

As the word “edge” connotes, garden edging is a method of defining the edge or border of a particular space in the garden. This term is often used interchangeably with garden lawn edging and landscape edging. Different garden edging ideas are available for different landscaping themes.

Materials for Garden Edgers

Stone is an excellent material for garden borders. It is resistant to water and other outdoor elements and imparts a natural look. It may be shaped into blocks and laid adjacent to each other but it may also be left unmodified. Mortar may be used to facilitate fitting.

Concrete is another good material. It can be designed according to the preferred shape or height. The traditional color is neutral or gray but if color is desired, oxides can be used. If one wants stenciled or engraved edgings, designs can be placed upon this material when it has not yet hardened. Concrete garden edging is best for straight garden edges. Once the garden edges are made of this material, patio paving and cobblestones made of the same material can be added.

House bricks with a depression on one surface are good for edges. To maximize their effect, rather than placing them on soil directly, one can place them on concrete buttress. Clay pavers may also be utilized for flat edges as long as they are supported with a buttress.

Wood is another material which can be used for edgings. It may be pine or hardwood. If used in the form of timbers, they can be stacked horizontally for straight edges or stacked vertically for curbed edges.

Live plants can even be used. Bamboo edging provides a green and natural look for the landscape. One must choose bamboo plants which can survive in the particular climate. With flower bed edging.

New options for landscaping include both metal and plastic garden edging. These materials are used to keep grass out of the garden and may be invisible to the unobservant eye. Plastic flower beds usually come in rolls of plastic and can placed in a narrow trench around the garden. The metal one may be made of steel, aluminum or iron. Garden rope edging may be utilized when one wants to utilize the rope that marked the gardens edges in order to add a rustic feature to the edge design.

Other Uses

Edgings for the garden also have uses other than separating the garden from the lawn. They can double as garden fencing and garden walls. It is a nice idea to enhance your garden decor with elements such as garden signs and wall plaques when placing on these walls. If done on an elevated area, you might want to look into retaining wall ideas in order to serve the purpose.

Where to Find the Right Edges

There is a proliferation of sites in the Internet that offer a vast range of supplies, and some to look out for would be Lowes, Ace Hardware, Plow and Hearth and Bender Board. Whether one is looking for decorative and/or functional garden edging products, these stores offer really good choices at the right price.

Putting garden edges need not be an impossible challenge. With the variety of materials to choose from, one can find the right garden edges for landscaping and gardening purposes.

Photo courtesy of sassycrafter

garden edging

Photo courtesy of Creating Character

bamboo edging

Garden Signs – Value-Added Decorations to the Garden

28 Aug

Garden Signs – Value-Added Decorations to the Garden

Ideally, gardens combine peace, pleasure and discovery by providing nature’s bounty and human creativity in a limited space and using garden signs to direct the explorer. Whether one wants a Japanese, English, Mediterranean or any other theme, a strategically placed garden sign adds value to the house’s outdoor offerings. Aside from being attractive additions to the garden decor, they also serve various functions.

Various Uses

Various uses of these signs include providing information about the garden’s history or its contents. For instance, the sign could feature when the garden was built and who designed it. The owner of the garden might want to put a stamp of ownership and uniqueness by placing personalized garden signs that contain what he/she wanted to achieve when he/she established the garden. A personalized garden sign can also state the name of the owner’s family and welcome the garden’s visitors.

When the garden has unique flora or fauna, the sign can provide data on the plant or animal. For instance, the garden sign can give information on a hard-to-breed rose or an exotic creature that is rare among other gardens. Collectors and breeders are very particular about these types of signs.

Yard signs can be used to warn off people. For instance, a yard sign might state “Beware of the dog” if one’s pet is allowed to roam around the house’s outdoors freely or “Don’t step on the grass” if one want is very meticulous about the well-kept appearance of the lawn. This is similar to the idea behind placing signs when one plants vegetables or herbs for the family’s consumption. The sign might contain “Please ask for permission before gathering the goods” just to let people know that proper courtesy is appreciated.

Of course, they can also serve as markers for directing people where to go. This function is of high priority when one has a large garden featuring mazes or tall hedges.

It is also practical to consider placing signs where there are garden lights nearby. Otherwise, the signs would not be seen at night, when the reach of garden lighting is limited. Better yet, one can place these great accessories so that they can be lighted based on need (e.g. during a garden party). Signs with nature designs can be used as hanging decorations on fences and stakes.

Garden plaques and signs can be used in combination because they have parallel uses. Wall plaques may be placed on the boundaries of the garden. These  could feature sayings about silence and contemplation, as the garden is often a place that serves these purposes. On the other hand, garden signs plaques can also lighten the mood and help people relax when the contain funny quotes.

Places – Also Suitable for Garden Plaques

While one can go to the local landscape company for signs and plaques, the Internet also has an excellent line-up of companies that offer various landscaping and outdoor design options. Lowes, Terrys Village, and Iron Accents have a wide array of signs and plaques that cater to one’s needs and preferences. Whether one wants wooden garden signs, novel garden signs, metallic memorial plaques or any other implement for improving one’s outdoor property, these companies provide them to their consumers at an affordable price.

Now, one does not have to hire a professional to give the garden an expert look. By using these important accessories and placing them in strategic places, that well-kept, well-loved look is within reach.

Photo by Nutmeg Designs **Courtesy of flickr.com

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Wall Plaques – Providing Indoor and Outdoor Appeal

17 Aug

Wall Plaques – Providing Indoor and Outdoor Appeal

A great addition to any house, whether indoors or outdoors are wall plaques. As a decorative accessory, a wall plaque can be used as wall decor inside the home. It can also be used as an outdoor wall art.

Outdoor Wall Plaques

When considering improving the outdoor wall art and the ambience of the house’s exterior, garden wall plaques can be used. They can be used to fit the existing motif of the garden. For instance, if the garden has an Italian motif, then Italian-designed plaques can be used. There are many kinds depending on the composition. A metal wall plaque, as the name indicates, is made of a metal alloy. It can be made of iron or brass. There are also plaques made of stone, marble or wood. When choosing an outdoor plaque, it is good to make sure that it is resistant to rust and to other outdoor elements in order to ensure its longevity.

One great way to expand the look of the garden is to use garden mirrors. Because they reflect images, they are able to create a sense of wider space. If there is enough space, the addition of complimentary garden clocks and a bird bath fountain makes the garden look classic and timeless, much like the famous gardens but within the vicinity of the one’s home. When these are combined with well-chosen plant trellises and beautiful wall plaques, an atmosphere of an expert-designed garden is created.

Wall plaques can also turn simple signs into decorative pieces. For instance, a plaque bearing the family’s crest, surname or even address can be placed outside to alert visitors. A simple “Welcome” wall plaque is enough to make one feel good about being in a new place.

Indoor Wall Plaques

The more popular use of wall plaques indoors is probably the awarding of plaques to recognize people’s achievements within the company. However, indoor wall plaques can also be used within the home.  Inspirational wall plaques can be placed inside the dining room or the family room to encourage the family in their daily activities. For instance, a wall plaque with a classic motto like “Carpe diem” is a great way to remind the family to be always on the look-out for new opportunities.

Another excellent use of indoor wall plaques is giving them as gifts. During a housewarming party or a wedding, a custom-made wall plaque bearing the names of the couple will certainly make them happy. Giving a wall plaque to a particular person with an engraving of that person’s greatest attribute, in a sense – a personalized trophy, is also a sure way of making the person smile e.g. “World’s Coolest Dad” or “World’s Greatest Mom”.

Where to Find Great Wall Plaques

There are many sources of wall plaques but among the best places are Z Gallerie, Things Remembered and Ballard Designs. These places offer a large variety of plaques that can be used either outdoors or indoors, whether to improve the architectural design or the aesthetics of one’s home.

Decorative wall plaques are versatile accessories. Whether it is your garden decor or your indoor accessories, with wall plaques, home becomes a place like no other.

Photo by Jolene00 **Courtesy of sxc.hu

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A Touch of Garden Lighting

13 Aug

A Touch of Garden Lighting

You will want to put a lot of thought into your garden lighting before you rush out and spend your hard earned cash on purchases. All aspects of your garden decor should reflect aspects of your personality and lifestyle. It could be you are looking for landscape lighting, rather than ideas for patio lighting. Different outdoor lights are more suited to particular areas or functions. You do not want to overdo things so it is often a better idea to start small and build on your lighting over time. You will also find that as the seasons change different elements of your garden will need to addressed. To show you planting to its full potential consider lighting that can easily be moved around to save on expense.

Planning Your Scheme

When planning your lighting scheme do not forget to consider other light sources such as a patio heater, which may not seem to be an obvious lighting source, but in fact may save you a fortune on lighting. Perhaps the simple addition of a tiki torch will give you ample light in a small enclosed area that houses a heater. For great style ideas look at Crate and Barrel who have a stunning range of ideas to inspire you.

Different categories of lighting can really enhance the individuality of your outdoor characteristics. Spot lights will concentrate the light in one area – they look great when hanging from a pergola and pointing into interesting areas of your patio. Creating focus is key, whether you use garden decorations or just interesting lighting. You might also want to check out led grow lights if you’re looking into growing plants and there are parts of your garden where the natural sunrays are not available.

Plug and Play Garden Lights

These types offer you both safety and simplicity and it really is possible to install this sort of system without a professional. No tools will even be needed as a simple water tight transformer can simply be plugged into your indoor electricity supply.  The lamp assembly may require a screwdriver, but nothing too complex is involved. Outdoor lighting can really be very simple with modern 12volt low voltage lighting providing ample light to illuminate and create atmospheric light effects. Improved technology ensures that garden lights do not have to be the dangerous items of yesteryear. Paradise Garden Lighting has some great ideas and products. Look at path lighting to see just what can be achieved no matter how small or large your area.

Solar Garden Lights

A solar garden light placed strategically around your garden can really help to lead the eye and draw your visitors’ attention to design features dotted around the garden. Solar lighting uses the natural rays of the sun collected during the day, it is recommended they get direct sunlight for at least 5 to 10 hours of the day so consider this before you buy. The beauty of solar lights is once purchased there are no further costs because they do not use mains electricity. An additional benefit is they are good to use whilst you are away on holiday giving the illusion of people being around. It can give you peace of mind as an added safety feature and is just one of many patio ideas to ensure your outdoor space is illuminated once dusk starts to fall.

Accessories

When lighting areas don’t forget how effective garden mirrors can be when used in conjunction with garden light. For some really spectacular garden accessories try checking out CostCo, if you have the budget spare there really are some quite amazing items to be purchased here. If a couple of classy yard lights are more to your taste to add that finishing style, try Lamps Plus to bring a light touch to your garden lighting. From torches to complete solutions if you do your research and bear in mind your budget there are solutions for every area of your garden.

Photo by Shutterbug Fotos **Courtesy of flickr.com

garden lighting

Garden Decor Ideas – Wind Spinners

18 Jul

Garden Decor Ideas – Wind Spinners

As small children wind spinners probably always held some fascination for you. One of the things you could always ask the Grandparents was how to make a wind spinner because they always knew how to make everything out of nothing in the way that your parents never could. You have probably spent many an hour with old washing up liquid bottles making plastic garden wind spinners. They probably never worked that well though and nowadays kids have such high standards they probably want high precision iron stop wind spinners, rather than the do it yourself versions of yesteryear.

Modern Technology

Whatever garden windmills you are looking for, the modern 3D take on the classic wind spinner will almost certainly surprise and delight you, the range available is highly sophisticated technology combined with unique art. Look at Iron Stop for some top of the range twisters to really amaze and delight you. Don’t stop there though; read on for other stockists that I feel will really challenge your concept of this humble garden ornament, which is basically one of the best garden decor ideas in terms of simplicity.

Metal Wind Spinners

The metal wind spinner is a highly developed example of modern research and development and an integral part of your garden art, as well as a good way to keep birds off your seedlings copper wind spinners glinting in the sun as they catch the breeze and twist around provide hours of mesmerising fascination. Nothing captures the imagination of a small boy like a 12” stainless steel dragon wind spinner and most men are small boys at heart and like to really make a go of it by adding a wind spinner motor so even on the stillest day they can recapture the thrill of the playground whirlygig. The girls probably prefer the twisters or the metal wind chimes as they tinkle in the breeze and make music that carries on the wind and seems to suggest the sound of fairies tinkling laughter as they clear up after the secret garden party

Rust Free

The beauty of the modern day technology is you no longer have to put up with rust on your garden ornaments if you choose to pay a little more at the outset. Stainless steel is really the best choice or take a look at Whirlygigs for some great ideas made of wood, birds or insects for example that whirl and turn on a pivot. Again all the metal parts are brass or stainless steel. Garden decor should reflect your personality so do not be afraid to place your favourite likes in your garden. Cool is being you and not going with the trend but finding something you like. Why not check out QVC for all those chimes and see what is out there to compliment your individuality. While you’re at it have a look at Suntwirlers who do an amazing range of designs which really are unique and stunning masterpieces personally created by artists in high quality stainless steel. If you are looking for a .wholesale supplier this is most certainly the place for you.

Photo by celluxmag **Courtesy of sxc.hu
rainbow-wind-spinner


Garden Decor Ideas – Garden Urns

7 Jul

Garden Decor Ideas – Garden Urns

If you have an outdoor space maybe a patio or yard have you considered garden urns to introduce some greenery and give the area some personality and style? Garden urns and planters can turn the blandest areas into a lovely relaxing spot where you can relax and enjoy the outdoors. Even a balcony from benefit from well placed garden decor ideas. Don’t limit yourself to traditional concepts as flower pots are effective contemporary garden art; also look around for new ideas such as pet urns to introduce a novelty factor to your area.

Looks Can Be Deceiving

Often when you look at pots in stores such as Horchow you wonder how you will get them home because they look so substantial. You also think they will weigh so much that when filled with earth and plants they will be a permanent fixture in your garden. You may want fixed lawn urns, but you probably want to move your large plant filled vases around the patio. Don’t be put off by the fact it looks heavy as looks can be deceiving, take the time and care to read exactly what you are buying as often decorative urns are made of much lighter materials like resin or fibreglass. Whilst the materials are robust enough for all year round outdoor use and strong enough for the purpose they are made they really are patio ideas you can easily manage.

Cast Iron

Cast iron garden urns are a staunch favourite amongst gardeners and they are much more suited to a permanent place in the garden and like wrought iron urns need to have a place where they can stand resplendent and command the situation they are in. However for most occasions containers can be plastic or lightweight look a likes.

Make the Correct Choice

Large garden urns are impressive and if you want a palm or other large structural plant the choice of planters on the market are many and varied look pop on line and look at Lowes for a wealth of information advice and products to ensure you make the correct choices for your outdoor space. It is important any new addition will compliment your existing garden decor. You may have outdoor wall art or railings in a Victorian style and wish to maintain the theme with a Victorian garden urn.

Fashions change, but it is not always necessary to replace all your costly items. Consider bringing in a more modern concept, such as popping garden mirrors strategically around to throw a new light on existing items or considering garden fountains to bring in a water feature. If you want something a little different try searching on garden urns UK if you live in the USA to see what ideas you can glean, and of course vice versa to see what the trends in other parts of the world are. Places like Amazon are great to look at in order to get ideas or purchase your desired urn; either .co.uk or .com will give you a wide range of options and great ideas to integrate into your garden decor no matter where you live. Check out eBay also for great prices but stock will vary literally every day.

Integrate Elements into the Scheme

Contemporary bird baths and other garden sculptures can be easily integrated into a scheme with a little thought and planning. Have you ever considered garden clocks as outdoor features? They withstand the weather and make sure you can have the very last moment outdoors enjoying the garden.

Always look in the sale section to see if there is any discount garden urns available as if we manage to get just one thing cheap, it leaves us more to spend on other purchases.

Photo by Mouse **Cortesy of flickr.com

garden urn

Outdoor Wall Art – An Expression of Ourselves

3 Jul

Outdoor Wall Art – An Expression of Ourselves

As we love to bring the outside into our homes, we can now also bring the inside out and today the garden is as much an expression of who we are as our home is. A really good way to make your personal garden statement is with outdoor wall art. There will be many considerations when selecting decorations, the size of your garden space being primary to your decisions. Even the smallest balcony can be enhanced by a simple wall mounted plaque with tea lights, or a metal plant trellis to climb your flowers and along. Modern coatings and paint effects ensure longevity and durability when exposed to the elements, so consider the finishes and life expectancy when making your investment.

Garden Decor Accessories

If you have an abundance of space, you can really go to town with large outdoor wall art. Walls such as the unsightly garage or the old shed can be transformed into that gallery you always wanted making your backyard resemble a studio. Let your personal preferences run wild and indulge yourself. If you are an artist a wall becomes a blank canvas for creating murals, but if not pop down to your local garden centre or go online to check out stores for the best garden art supplies. Most outdoor paints will do fine, but will need sporadic attention to ensure the mural is maintained to a high standard. Consider the children at play though and always make sure your materials are safe and appropriate for the little ones.

Outdoor Garden Wall Art

Outdoor metal wall art is an obvious choice and metal is already part of lots of gardens, with wrought iron hanging basket brackets and metal railings. It is quite simple to add to what you already have, there are some lovely wrought iron wall art plaques, such as lovely leaf design tea light holders that add a touch of romantic lighting to your evenings in the garden. Also consider wall mounted cast iron tables or pot plant holders with a trellis which can bring practical sculpture into the garden.

Another popular metal is blue steel, great for bringing a touch of adventure into the garden; the lovely silver with blued patches lends itself well to nautical themes. The blues and silvery greys can compliment most tastes if you shop around; the ranges available are quite surprising. Look out for color washed items also such as fern fronds with gold highlights on a green wash background.

Outdoor copper wall art is another component of artistic garden decor design and if you have the money why not consider a bespoke copper water fountain for your garden or wall? A truly original creation, that brings the water feature into your garden in a unique and special way. Outdoor wall art plaques can really transform the bland areas adding interest and style. Fine garden art says a lot about you, so whether it’s copper fishes, sculptured tulips or a stylish shimmering dragonfly you want in your pop onto your garden wall, the ranges of garden decor accessories available in stores is quite dramatic and wide ranging. Prices range from cheap pound/dollar store items to state of the art commissions so use your imagination to create your ideal outdoor gallery.

Photo by  knitsteel **Cortesy of flickr.com

outdoor metal art

Taking Care of Your Garden Decor

14 Jun

Taking Care of Your Garden Decor

Gardens ARE extensions of our homes. We must take care of our garden decor at all times as gardens have become over the decades an important part of our homes. There are all sorts of garden decorations for you to take into account; the best way is to create a theme and add accordingly – birdhouses, garden wall decor, benches, ponds, statues, etc – and yes, even one little flower in the corner of your lawn counts for that ultimate great look!! You must take care of your lawn as it should always look neat and tidy. If you own a large garden, why not try a ride on mower? A John Deere ride on lawn mower is one worth checking out.

Let’s have a look at some of the most popular themes:

English Garden

My favorite is the English Garden Rose. It has become increasingly popular in the last few years. The British style gives your outdoor garden decor a definitely panache; it has a very elegant style but is also extremely simple to create (as long as you take good care of the flowers which can be very time consuming). Even though roses are my all time favorite, we can’t forget how the Brits mix them nicely with potentillas, geraniums, daisies, dandelions, daffodils, heather, lupin, pansies and primulas.

If you are looking for a cheap garden decor an English garden might be the answer for you. Still, you will have to spend quite a lot of time taking care of these beautiful flowers whether you opt for a rose garden or a mix of different ones.

Japanese Garden

Yes, I know, very elegant, beautiful, simple, eye-catching, and… not that easy to create! Some refer to it as a type of whimsical garden decor. It is fascinating spending time creating a delightful Japanese Garden, and certain features are a must, like bamboo fountains, a tea house, beautiful stone lanterns and moss. These particular outdoor garden decorations will add nicely to your Japanese theme.

Mediterranean Garden

I’m thinking tomatoes, peppers, aromatic herbs, olive trees, lots of vibrant colors, and of course Spain and Italy! The Mediterranean garden is indeed a very beautiful one. If you live in a hot area this type of garden will “take good care of itself” For your outdoor garden decor you will need nice colorful pottery (majolican pots works really, really well), a nice garden statue, a couple of benches and lots of beautiful “helechos” (fern)

Ever thought of a “Junk Garden” theme?

Yep, you guessed it; this is the type of home and garden decor for someone who really can’t afford to spend a lot of money. It works wonderfully well, as you “design as you go”, adding bits and pieces using your creativity and imagination. Also you can look at it as a way of “recycling” different objects by placing them scattered around your garden or patio. What I like the most about these so called “junk gardens” is the element of surprise! Remember you can be as free, bold and unique as you like when it comes to your garden décor.

Whatever your choice, from the lovely warm and romantic English rose garden to the more intrinsic Japanese one, you will become a garden designer from the very first moment you decide to work on your garden decor. And if you find it too overwhelming, don’t hesitate to hire a professional. They will help you out assessing the possibilities and make it a lot easier for you!

Photo by Martin_Heigan **Cortesy of flickr.com – Creative Commons

garden-decor

Photo by Gavin Anderson **Cortesy of flickr.com – Creative Commons

garden statue

Garden Decor Ideas: Garden Windmills

29 May

Garden Decor Ideas: Garden Windmills



One of the most quaint and magical decorative elements for your garden are the beautiful garden windmills. You can find them in many different styles, sizes, colors and materials (from wood to plastic and steel) as well as kits to easily ensemble at home. Some of them have been made to show down to the last detail and are precious replicas of the larger farm ones. The good news is that you can purchase beautiful miniature yard windmills for as little as $10 or you can choose larger ones ranging from medium height (around 4.5 ft) to the stunning 12 ft windmill.

Types and Styles

Wooden garden windmills are probably amongst the most popular for the garden decor. The Amish hand crafted American windmill is a spectacular piece that could be placed near your garden decking, porch, patio or any outdoor area. The wood is handcrafted by the Amish and detail is just magnificent. Quality of the wood is usually high so it should last in your garden for years to come.

The classic Dutch windmill is a great example of the traditional design; no wonder these gems are universally appealing. There is no doubt that it will create a charming focal point in any corner of your garden or outdoor area. Old styles are particularly picturesque capturing one of Holland’s most famous hallmarks.

Ornamental garden windmills are beautiful but look for fully functional windmills that turn with just a touch of gentle breeze. Some of them have built in weathervanes to indicate the direction of the wind as well, which is a great addition. Medium garden windmills will go well with smaller lawns while the large decorative lawn windmills are fitted for grand scaled gardens or large outdoor spaces.

The John Deere windmill features the beautiful iconic green and yellow colors and logo. This is a windmill that will definitely add that serene and charming farm feel to any garden. The miniature windmill fetches for around $25; the 4.5 ft starts at $75, an 8 ft will cost you around $120 – $160, and the larger windmills will set you back $300+ (12 ft).

If you are looking for windmill aeration to circulate your pond or any other area of your garden, check out different windmill kits that can provide maximum control in all types of wind speeds and simple maintenance.

Finishes

The natural wood unfinished is very popular and sits well in any garden. You can also stain or paint the wooden garden windmill to preserve it or give it a different touch if you are looking into complimenting your ornamental windmill with the rest of your decor.

If metal is your kind of finish opt for the robust steel windmill. You will find beautiful specimens with wheels that rotate on 2 different ball bearings and will definitely last a very long time in your garden. Well balanced wheels will make them turn at any gentle breeze turning into whichever direction wind comes from.

When you order a decorative windmill make sure that it is easy to assemble and that it won’t take too long. Also find out what tools you need to put it together and read the instructions as some garden windmills should be built on a hard base like cement or even wood in order to make them really secure. Also, look for the powder coated finish and not plastic if your budget allows.

Garden windmills with their lovely charming effect are  the perfect addition to your outdoor area.

Photo by greyman **Cortesy of sxc.hu

garden windmill

Garden Decor Ideas

26 May

Garden Decor Ideas

Whether you have a rambling garden, a small patio, a back yard or a balcony there are garden decor ideas you can use to enhance the area. Even the smallest balcony can be given accents to give it style. Garden mirrors can be used to give the illusion of space and coupled with a plant trellis a really effective look can be achieved. Cheap garden decor ideas really can transform an area. It does not have to break the bank as you can make garden decor ideas quite personal with a little creativity. A simple tiki torch will throw light around the smallest area in an effective manner. Bird feeders are another simple yet effective idea.

Additions that Will Last a Long Time

For the larger space there is a wealth of garden decorating ideas with many forms of garden art available, such as statues, which could be in the form of a birdbath fountain. There’s nothing more beautiful than enjoying the singing of birds in the morning, so if you like to attract wildlife bird houses can also be added.

You may want to also consider a water scarecrow to keep unwanted cats away from the birds you have attracted to your garden. They are gentle devices that will keep your garden from being treaded on and you will be able to relax whilst indoors.

A larger garden will want garden fencing, particularly if you have a garden pond and visiting children. Keeping the style of your general garden decor is important when it comes to choosing the right materials, wood will provide the warm whimsical feel while robust iron wrought is perfect to add grandeur to your garden – although the latter comes at a cost.

A classic garden arch never fails to impress and with climbing plants such as honeysuckle it can form a spectacular assault on the senses as the glorious scent wafts over your garden.

You may wish to create a themed garden and the classic Japanese garden or Zen garden (see picture below of the beautiful Buddha statue) is well worth investigating  for garden decoration ideas as you can also incorporate many western ideas such as outdoor wicker furniture into your scheme to blend styles and beautify your outdoor area.

When you have fully researched garden decor ideas and your outside space is complete you will want to sit back and relax so don’t forget to look at garden clocks to ensure your time is well spent.

Photo by dalrathki **Courtesy of sxc.hu

garden-decor-buddha-statue

What you Need to Know About Your Birdbath Fountain

3 May

What you Need to Know About Your Birdbath Fountain

A birdbath fountain not only can look very beautiful in your yard or garden but it can also be very inviting for lots of different types of birds. If you enjoy watching these lovely creatures, like to listen to their melodic tunes while getting ready in the morning, there is no better addition to your outdoor space. When it comes to being indoors, why not adorn your place with bird decor accessories? It’s becoming a popular concept and many people who have a passion for birds like to bring this theme into their homes.

There are many different birdbath fountains in the market, but the right one will surely see your visitors coming back again and again. Birds will most definitely amuse you while bathing, chirping and drying in so many different ways: a real spectacle that shows one of the many beauties of nature.

Tips

Your birdbath fountain should have a shallow sink; less than eight inches is desirable. You should be able to fill it with only five centimeters of water; greater depth might cover the whole of the bird’s body, jeopardizing plenty of visits.

You will be able to find many different birdbath fountains’designs in garden centers, but try to choose one that has a rough surface, the reason being because many of these fountains tend to be slippery and do not provide the right surface for the birds to walk on them safely.

Place your birdbath fountain in a sunny spot away from trees and shrubs so that birds can watch out for other animals approaching. A good idea is to place the fountain somewhere in your garden that you can view from inside your home.

Locate it near a sink or where water is available so you can easily fill it and clean it. Use clean water and fill every two or three days during the summer to prevent algae.
If you own a patio heater place your fountain near it during the winter season to ensure the birds will approach and use it.

The beauty of a birdbath fountain

Beautiful birdbath fountain, photo by by kretyen – Courtesy of flickr.com

Make sure you constantly and consistently fill the birdbath fountain. When birds are left without water resources they could near undesirable places such as air conditioners your pet’s water bowl.

Do not place your fountain under bird feeders or perches. Droppings can fall on it and spoil the water.

The beauty of birdbath fountains is that they are a very inexpensive source of entertainment and you can find them in many garden centers.

You can find your fountain in all sorts of materials: plastic, copper, concrete, stone, metal, etc. When choosing think of your garden decor and how you can enhance it with the right choice.

If you live in a cold area you might want to consider a solar birdbath fountain to ensure the water will not freeze – if you get enough sun in your garden that is! They are very practical and you don’t really have to worry about wires, sockets and plugs.

During the summer you will see many different birds coming to your garden to enjoy the fresh water. Birds can bathe many times a day if the weather is really hot.

A birdbath fountain is most definitely a great and beautiful addition to any garden.

Your Garden Pond

3 Feb


For your garden decor you must consider a beautiful garden pond. They are very attractive and can also be very original; artificial ponds are a very nice way to fill up spaces around your outdoor areas that have no specific utility.  Make sure before installing garden ponds that the area where you are going to construct it will not be used in the future for anything else, and preplan the whole operation using a rope around the area in order to visualize measurements, etc.

There are many different types of garden ponds and basically what you want to look for is the shape in order to measure depth and overall decor.

Where and which one?

It is a good idea to place your pond where the sun shines for at least for to six hours a day. Something people usually forget is not to place it near a tree as the leaves will fall onto the water and that can be quite a source for lots of infections. Protect it with a fence if there are going to be children playing around the area.

It is very easy to find preformed plastic garden ponds and many gardening centers, but the shape and size are not always adapted to the needs of your particular garden so you might want to create your own one from scratch. This is a more difficult option and it might be particularly useful to get a professional to do it if your budget can afford it.

There are many ways to decorate your pond and make it really beautiful; try to divide the space into two different areas. One would be for marsh plants and the other for the fish and any aquatic plants you want to add. What about tiling around it? You could also place nice pebbles around the area or just stones.

To give it originality and beauty you can add waterfalls, which apart from being really ornamental they provide oxygen to the water. The installation should be quite simple and can be done by placing some type of natural or artificial stone and then with the use of garden pond pumps you can create the illusion of a natural waterfall. An essential part of your pond would be the plants that you choose to decorate it. They are also very useful and essential for fish life as they supply oxygen. There are many species that can be used for the decoration of your garden pond like lilies, irises, flags, fairy moss and marsh plants such as bullrushes.

Garden fish ponds are very beautiful and the pond should contain a mixture of different fish species which are compatible with each other. They do play a very important role in the natural life of the cycle of your garden pond.

Your new beautiful garden pond should contain a mixture of different fish species which are compatible with each other. To maintain them in good health it is necessary to provide them with adequate food, mainly nutritional. Make sure to take good care of them as they play a very important role in the natural life of the cycle of your garden pond and ultimately the overall look of your outdoor area.

garden pond

photo credit: Murdo McDermid – Cortesy of sxc.hu

Garden Art with Decorative Elements

13 Jan


Decorating and cultivating a garden is a joy that goes beyond the simple fact of growing plants and flowers, and working on your garden art is a delight that is not only good for your garden decor but it is also good for you in terms of working face to face with nature and health due to the physical work involved.

Decorating a garden can be a relatively easy task. It is an area of our homes that demands attention and deserves to look beautiful, nice and pleasant. There are many elements you can add to your garden in order to beautify it; these elements should enhance a particular look you are trying to achieve and match the size and style of your outdoor area while at the same time not becoming the sole focus. Sculptures, metal, pots, glass, benches, arches, water features, birdhouses, planters, gnomes, these are all features you could add to your garden to decorate it accordingly.

Beginnings

Some people find it difficult (especially when they first start to decorate their garden) to find the right garden art ideas, and they wonder if they are doing it “right” due to the lack of experience. What you should consider first is the major factors like weather, type of plants your garden already has (or you’re planning on growing), size of the outdoor area, colors that blend, landscape general design and your own experience.

Harmony and practicability are both important in general when designing a garden and adding art to it. If you are tired of the way your garden looks, or you find it to bland or lacking in personality, sit down and draw a sketch on where things could go: you might find yourself drawing a few sketches until you find the one you really like.

Outdoor Garden Art Sometimes is About Lateral Thinking

Think of other ways to enhance areas that are not obvious when we first look at the garden like corners or certain spots. Add curves where there are straight lines by placing a nice garden arch, and create different environments by the use of slabs, grass or gravel.

A ponds is a great addition to any garden, water features are just the right thing to add freshness. You could enhance your pond with tiki torches that go around making it dreamy around the evening and night time; or adding big pots with very colorful flowers to bring even more attention to the spot.

Outdoor metal wall art has been popular for a long time now. Copper vines and whirligigs, even masks are some of the features people add to their green environments making the garden a gallery that displays beautiful features.

Sculptures are great for adding a definite focal point. It will bring to life any corner that was not noticeable before but you have to make sure it is not taking over your entire garden decor. While some people might find garden art sculpture “a bit too much”, it is true that once the statue is place in the right place and attends to the needs of respecting size and style of the garden, it creates a wonderful atmosphere that many people admire and copy in their own homes.

Use light to brighten up certain areas like paths or areas where you sit like a bench or where your garden furniture is. Some solar lights are really inexpensive and will save you the hassle of having to fiddle with the electric fittings (plus saving you on the bill).

Bird watching is always beautiful and peaceful; add a birdbath fountain and feeders near the house so you can enjoy their company. Some people add as many as 20, 30 or 40 and their house becomes a paradise in the early hours of the morning. Also, the right flowering plants will ensure you a beautiful butterfly garden.

Lateral thinking is a must if you want your garden to display personality and originality: candelabra, wood carved, masks, handmade pottery, vases and even paintings that you can display outdoors.

For your garden wall art display different planter holders and plant hangers; they can not only hold your pots but they will add decor to the walls of your garden decking or patio areas. Welcome signs and old candelabra add a touch of individuality, while metal wall sculptures next to a brick wall will beautify the area.

So, start sketching out your new garden adding the new elements like water, pots, birdhouses, statues, metal art, chairs, benches, fences, arches, torches, candles and paintings for your walls.

Whatever your choice of garden art, make sure in the end the area is comfortable while at the same time original and pleasant to the eye. Overdoing it will not help; there are many options for you to decorate the garden with and don’t forget that this very special part of our home deserves lots of care and dedication.

Garden Art: Statues Bring Corners Back to Life
Creative Commons License photo credit: Horia Varlan

A Water Scarecrow Helps Preserve Your Garden Decor

8 Dec


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Contech Electronics CRO101 Scarecrow Motion-Activated SprinklerHave you ever thought about adding a water scarecrow to your garden? This scarecrow is a nifty little system that keeps the birds away from gardens and pools. It consists of a sprinkler that squirts water for a few seconds and it is activated only when motion is detected. The scarecrow water sprinkler will cover an area of around 10m (wide) by 14m (length) and operates on a 9 volt battery capable of supplying up to three thousand shots and uses very little water in each shot, and it will not affect at all any of the watering methods you use in your garden.

It also will not affect your garden decor, as it is quite small and not very noticeable. Some people use the scarecrow water sprayer for their pools or outdoor water fountains (so pigeons and other birds don’t rest on the borders messing them up). It will shoot water at them when it detects motion without any damage (it is harmless) so your pool can stay nice and clean throughout the summer period or while your are using it.

For best brand jet water spray deterrent check out what your pocket can afford. Contech is probably the most popular one, while Havahart also offers a scarecrow yard sprayer at an affordable price with good consumer reviews. They’re both popular brands with similar prices, Contech’s scarecrow looks more like.. well, a scarecrow.

**If you are in the UK, click HERE for best Amazon Sprayers**

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Here are the 3 Contech options we’ve chosen:


And here’s the Havahart 5265 Spray Away Motion-Activated Water Repellent:


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Our last option is a cheap “scarecrow” by Laguna (Laguna Blue Heron), which can also help the look of your garden decor:


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Water scarecrows are being used as a method for conservation in gardens but it is advisable that you do not leave outside during the winter. The water will freeze and damage the scarecrow, so store it inside the shed or somewhere indoors. This device can set you back from $40 to around $100 depending on the specific brand. The beauty is that it doesn’t use any chemicals and it is not complicated to set up as well as being very inexpensive to run. The sprayer shoots water unexpectedly which works extremely efficiently when it comes to scaring off any animals that could damage your garden and keeping the decor at its best. It is also environmentally friendly.

So there is no need for you to be thinking of traps or electric fences which can be quite inhumane to animals. A scarecrow water jet pack and its motion activated sprinkler is a very innovative way for you to take care of your flowers and vegetables and also will “add” to your decor in the sense that you will not have to opt for ugly fences or any other sort of unappealing methods.

When the water is shot, the scarecrow makes a loud noise which also helps to scare the animals away. An added bonus is that the animals associates this experience to the area so they are not likely to return.

A water scarecrow is really easy to set up, and with the best brand jet water spray deterrent listed above you can’t really go wrong. They are very economical to run and will help keep your garden decor at its best!

In Action:

**See also fox deterrents for gardens


Use Garden Yard Lights to Enhance Particular Areas

26 Nov


Outdoor landscape looks great when you add lights to it. Yard lights serve not only to light up gardens and patios, but also any outdoor area you need to beautify or bring to attention. They add functionality when placed near your home or areas where you need to be able to see at night in your garden. When placed with thought and care, they can make your outdoor areas look really stunning.

The most common choice of yard lighting nowadays is with the use of solar lights. They are the option to go for if you want to save money as led lighting costs a bit more. In a similar way to solar tiki torches, solar lights can provide you with light during the night with the convenience of no switches that have to be turned on and off, no bulbs to replace and no electricity bill. The sensors tell the lights when is dusk or dawn so they can either take energy from the natural light or glow by themselves.

Garden yard lights are useful to beautify certain spots - courtesy of sxc.hu

Garden yard lights are useful to beautify certain spots – courtesy of sxc.hu

Some people prefer to adorn their garden with low voltage yard lights to create a particular landscape lighting effect; they also don’t cost much in terms of electricity consumption and do the job as well. Another way to enhance your outdoor area with light is by the use of Christmas lights. Even though they are particularly manufactured for that time of the year, some people opt to have them on display all year round as they can look really beautiful. The thing to do if you want to keep your Christmas yard lights for longer period than the festive season, is to make sure you keep the amount of lights to a minimum and only light up the areas you want to enhance. Take the colored ones out and keep white as the choice of lighting.

With the use of the right yard lights you can enjoy your garden or patio area for a lot longer than usual. If you are looking into saving money as well as helping the environment, you can also consider installing solar patio lighting. For extra effect, add a couple of garden mirrors and succumb at the wonderful spectacle of illusion that will be created around you. And don’t forget that in the winter months it can get really dark during the day and you will probably be deprived of the use of most outdoor areas in general. The right garden lights can solve this problem easily and also add beauty to your favorite spots. The key is to get the ones that would both match and enhance your garden decor and to place them accordingly: you could add some of the yard lights around your swimming pool or pond, or around your garden decking, rock garden, surrounding the flowerbeds, underneath a statue or garden arch.

Change the mood and color according to the time of year or add glamour to any evening party. The yard lights will make it easy for your guests to enjoy the beauty of your garden at night.

The Tiki Torch & the Exotic Tropical Garden

26 Nov


When we think of a tiki torch our mind travels to exotic islands. Indeed, it has been their form of lighting for many years. No wonder so many people use them for outdoor decoration as much as solar garden lights. The torch provides the tropical feel while at the same time adding a wonderful touch to our garden decor.

Tiki torches are very popular with beach themed weddings. Sometimes you might need the torches for just that special occasion or decorating an event in particular. Easy and light to transport, you don’t need any type of electricity near the area so you are basically free to place them anywhere you please. They are also cheap to buy, which makes them even more attractive when thinking of our garden decoration.

A tiki torch consists of a base follows by a pole and flame-bearer at the very top. A wick absorbs oil at the bearer making it burn for quite a long time.

Materials – When it comes to materials, a favorite is the inexpensive bamboo tiki torch. While this hand-make look provides your garden with the island vibe and feel, you can also find them in ceramic, metal, glass, mosaic, stainless steel, brass or copper, but they will be more expensive. Tiki torch wicks are made of fiberglass or cotton and they work by being dipped in the chosen fuel.

Tiki Torch Fuel – Fuel types range from natural or propane gas to paraffin oil and electricity. Use citronella tiki torches if you want to repel the insects in your garden and add the same time let out nice fragrances. Gas tiki torches will burn non-stop, and are great for more windy areas –they don’t go out that easily – but you are compromising on the general ambience as they don’t have the glow and warmth bamboo ones do.

Add the Tropical Touch with a Tiki Torch - courtesy of sxc.hu

Add the Tropical Touch with a Tiki Torch – courtesy of sxc.hu

If you want your tiki torch for a special event or just to last you that summer, bamboo tiki torches are the ones to go for. For a more durable torch you should purchase metal ones. Ceramic torches are very delicate when it comes to handling – they can break easily – .

Safety – Be careful and never light your tiki torch indoors. When lighting them, be aware of what is around them and also of children being near you. Electric torches are safe for indoors, and although the look is not even close to the real thing, you can have peace of mind if there are children and pets around it.

Sizes and styles – Also think of sizes when buying the torches. Some of them can be attached to your decking rails, so there is no need to make holes on the grass. 15” to 20” ones are perfect to add around the pool and along the paths. Table tops are also available. Common higher torches look great scattered around the garden or patio.

Here is a summary on the different types of tiki torches:

Bamboo Tiki Torch – It will last about ten to twelve hours depending on the size of the fuel bearer. They don’t release burning bits of paper unlike wood torches.

Metal torches – Great for windy conditions and no release of burning bits of paper. They can be filled with gas or oil and will last you for as long as you keep refilling/substituting the fuel.

Electric torches – Hassle-free; light for as long as they are switched on, great if there are any pets or children around, can be used indoors.

An nice alternative for garden lighting is the solar tiki torch. They are quite new in the market but becoming increasingly popular. You can grab one for as little as $20, although they go up in price up to a few hundred. Cheap models tend to “glow in a more red” sort of color and are great to just add a touch of light here and there, while the more expensive ones give out a more white glow. The obvious advantages are the no-danger factor, no oil or gas that you would need to replace every so often, no switch-flipping and the fact that you just bury them and forget. They should last you a bit longer than the 5 to 10 hours it says on the package, but the light does dim considerably. But the main difference between the cheaper versions and more expensive ones lies really in the color of the glow. Be aware that in winter a solar tiki torch won’t be able to take much energy in due to the few hours of sunlight.